Did you know that diarrhea or diarrheal disease is the second leading cause of death in children five years and below? Among the many questions about diarrhea is how to stop it. Here are some important information about diarrhea and how you can manage it.

What is Diarrhea?

Obviously, when a person has diarrhea, he or she can experience manifestations of loose or watery stool or bowel movements. It is common to have this and usually it is not serious.

Although it is normal for people to get diarrhea a few times a year, some have abnormal conditions or irritable bowel syndrome.

What Causes Diarrhea?

Diarrhea will happen because of a certain virus that reaches your gut. Usually, it is called stomach flu or intestinal flu. The top causes of diarrhea include the following.

  • Too much consumption of alcohol
  • Allergic reactions to certain foods
  • Diabetes
  • Ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease
  • Consumption of food that can upset the digestive system
  • Bacterial infection or other organisms causing most types of food poisoning
  • Abusive intake of laxatives
  • Certain medications
  • Hyperthyroidism or overactive thyroid
  • Those under radiation therapy
  • Running can sometimes cause diarrhea, but no clear reasons are established
  • Certain types of cancers
  • Digestive system surgery
  • Mal-absorption or the difficulty in absorbing certain nutrients

In most cases, diarrhea can follow after a person experienced constipation, particularly for people who have had irritable bowel syndrome.

  • Bacteria or Parasites – Bacteria and parasites can be transmitted to your body when you accidentally ingested contaminated food or water. Oftentimes, a person can have diarrhea when travelling in developing countries. This syndrome is called traveler’s diarrhea.

Another type of bacteria that can cause serious infections is called Clostridium difficile. This causes diarrhea, which can occur after a course of antibiotic intake or during hospitalization.

  • Fructose – A certain type of sugar found naturally in honey and fruits, is called fructose. Sometimes it is added as a sweetener for certain beverages. However, it can lead to diarrhea if taken by people who have difficulty in digesting fructose.

  • Lactose Intolerance – Another type of sugar found in milk or dairy products is called lactose. When people consume dairy products and have difficulty digesting lactose, they will likely have diarrhea. This condition can increase with age due to the fact that the levels of the enzyme that digest lactose will drop after childhood.

  • Medications – A number of medications, including antibiotics, can trigger diarrheal diseases. This is because good and bad bacteria can be destroyed by antibiotics, disturbing the natural balance of the bacteria in the intestines.

Drugs used to treat cancer and some antacids with magnesium can also cause diarrhea.

  • Surgery – Sometimes, abdominal or gallbladder removal can be a factor in diarrheal disease.

  • Viruses – Another factor that can cause diarrhea is viral infection. Among these viruses are cytomegalovirus, Norwalk virus, and viral hepatitis. On the other hand, a common cause for acute childhood diarrhea is called rotavirus.

Symptoms of Diarrhea

There are a number of symptoms for diarrheal disease, but these will depend on the cause. One or more of the following are common manifestations of diarrhea.

  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Cramping
  • Bloating
  • Dehydration
  • Fever
  • Bloody stools
  • Frequent urge to move your bowels
  • Large volumes of stool

If ever you have experienced any or several of the symptoms of diarrhea, it is best to talk to your physician about it.

When to See a Doctor?

It is best to see your doctor once you experience any of the following conditions.

  • If the diarrhea persists more than just a few days
  • When you become dehydrated
  • When you have severe rectal or abdominal pains
  • If you have black or bloody stool
  • When you have fever over 39 degrees Centigrade or 102 degrees Fahrenheit

How to Get Rid of Diarrhea?

If you are aiming to stop diarrhea when it strikes, then here are quick remedies for you.

  • Over-the-Counter Medication

If you are suffering from sudden diarrhea attack without any obvious causes, you could use some help from an over-the-counter medication. Remedies such as pink bismuth or loperamide are effective solutions if you want quick results.

These may also be useful to reduce the frequency of stool and relieve cramping.

  • Drink Water

Another good option to get rid of diarrhea is to prioritize hydration. This is because having diarrhea is extremely dehydrating. So it is advised that you take as much fluid as you can.

However, it is not advisable to consume dehydrating beverages containing alcohol, caffeine, prunes, or sugar. This is because they have a laxative effect which could make your trip to the bathroom more frequently.

  • Sports Drinks

There are lots of sports drinks in the market, including the popular beverage promoted by athletes. Indeed, this is a potent move against diarrhea because it replenishes electrolytes after an intense workout.

This is even more so when the volume and frequency of the watery stool is significant. So, vital steps must be done in order to avoid dehydration.

Remember that the moment you lose fluids from your body, you can also deplete the electrolyte supply of your body.

  • Skip The Dairy and Fried Foods For Now

You must skip the dairy and heavy fatty foods if you have diarrhea or tend to be sensitive to such diet. Of course, you may still get the probiotic-rich yogurt diet that you have started.

  • Try The BRAT Diet

You may think this is silly, but your mom’s remedy when you had tummy aches during childhood could actually work. That was similar to the BRAT diet, which is an acronym that stands for bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. This is in fact an old dietary solution that is still effective up until this day.

  • Have Some Salty Snacks

Aside from drinking sports drinks, you can munch on some mildly salty crackers. This is quite potent because of its low salt content and residue. But this is not advisable for those with high blood pressure or on salt-restricted dieting.

  • Probiotic Or Good Bacteria Diet

Of course, a lot of bad bacteria are present inside your gut when you have diarrhea. You can remedy it by replacing them with good bacteria intake in probiotics such as lactobacillus and saccharomyces boulardii, which are proven helpful in certain cases of diarrheal disease.

Nevertheless, for those experiencing severe symptoms, you still have to call your physician as soon as possible.

What stops diarrhea fast?

BRAT diet

A diet known as BRAT may also quickly relieve diarrhea. BRAT stands for bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. This diet is effective due to the bland nature of these foods, and the fact that they’re starchy, low-fiber foods. These foods have a binding effect in the digestive tract to make stools bulkier.

How long should diarrhea last?

Acute diarrhea generally lasts for 1 to 2 days. It can sometimes last up to 2 weeks. However, this type of diarrhea is usually mild and resolves on its own. Chronic diarrhea lasts for at least 4 weeks.

What causes watery diarrhea?

Food poisoning resulting from a bacterial infection is a common cause of watery diarrhea.

What can you eat to stop diarrhea?

Here’s another bit of good advice from Mom for treating diarrheaeat the BRAT diet: bananas, rice (white), applesauce and toast. When your health is good, physicians usually recommend whole-grain, high-fiber foods.

What drinks help diarrhea?

Give an adult plenty of clear fluid, like fruit juices, soda, sports drinks and clear broth. Avoid milk or milk-based products, alcohol, apple juice, and caffeine while you have diarrhea and for 3 to 5 days after you get better.

Is tea good for diarrhea?

When your stomach is upset, sipping on a hot cup of tea is a simple way to ease your symptoms. Still, the type of tea may make a big difference. In fact, certain varieties have been shown to treat issues like nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Does honey help diarrhea?

Studies have confirmed that honey shortens the duration of diarrhea in patients with bacterial gastroenteritis through its antibacterial properties. In nonbacterial gastroenteritis, honey had the same effect as glucose on the duration of the diarrhea.

Should I eat if I have diarrhea?

Eating When you Have Diarrhea

Use low-fat milk, cheese, or yogurt. If you have very severe diarrhea, you may need to stop eating or drinking dairy products for a few days. Eat bread products made from refined, white flour. Pasta, white rice, and cereals such as cream of wheat, farina, oatmeal, and cornflakes are OK.

Is Coke good for diarrhea?

When it comes to stomach distress, many people view a cup of flat soda as just what the doctor ordered. The quick and popular remedy – usually in the form of cola, ginger ale or clear sodas – is said to help settle the stomach with its slight fizz and replenish fluids and glucose lost by vomiting and diarrhea.

Is Egg good for diarrhea?

Yes, in most individuals with diarrhea, eggs help slow down bowel movements and help the patient recover faster from diarrhea. Cooking them makes them easier to digest. So, a person can eat boiled eggs when they have diarrhea, provided they are not allergic to eggs.

What is the best medicine for diarrhea?

Two types of meds relieve diarrhea in different ways:
  • Loperamide (Imodium) slows the movement of food through your intestines, which lets your body absorb more liquid.
  • Bismuth subsalicylate (Kaopectate, Pepto-Bismol) balances out how fluid moves through your digestive tract.

Does drinking water make diarrhea worse?

If you have IBD but a normal or near normal bowel length, increasing the amount of water you drink should not worsen your diarrhea. This is because the diarrhea is more likely to be caused by your IBD rather than as a direct result of a failure to absorb fluid from the bowel.

Is it better to stop diarrhea or let it go?

If you suffer from acute diarrhea, it’s best to treat it straight away. By treating diarrhea, your body can start to recover so you can feel better and get on with your day as quickly as possible.

Is Gatorade good for diarrhea?

Try to avoid non-clear liquids such as milk, juices, and sodas, because these can actually make the diarrhea worse. You can replace electrolytes by drinking sports drinks, such as Gatorade or PowerAde, or Pedialyte.

Is Pepto Bismol good for diarrhea?

PeptoBismol is used to treat diarrhea and relieve the symptoms of an upset stomach. These symptoms can include: heartburn. nausea.

Is Sprite good for diarrhea?

During an illness involving vomiting and diarrhea, it is important to prevent dehydration. Drink plenty of fluids in small sips until the stomach is settled and then in larger amounts until your thirst is satisfied. Clear liquids are the best. Water, Gatorade, Sprite, 7-Up, and Ginger Ale are suggested.

Is banana good for diarrhea?

What to eat if you have diarrhea: Eat foods that are high in pectin, such as applesauce, bananas, and yogurt. Pectin, a water-soluble fiber, helps reduce diarrhea. Eat foods that have a lot of potassium, such as fruit juices, sports drinks, potatoes without the skin, and bananas.